OPINION | The case for AUKUS you should read – even if not yet the explanation we need

HMAS Farncomb

Since the AUKUS initiative was launched in September 2021, its Australian supporters and critics have been united on one point: that successive governments have failed to make a detailed strategic case for why Australia needs to acquire eight nuclear-powered submarines for its navy. No prime...


VESSEL REVIEW | Dampier Legend – First boat in new RIB series for Australian volunteer rescue agency

Dampier Legend

Volunteer Marine Rescue Western Australia (VMRWA) recently took delivery of a new rigid inflatable boat (RIB) for operation by its Marine Rescue Dampier station in Western Australia’s Pilbara region. The aptly named Dampier Legend was designed by local naval architecture firm Southerly Designs and built in fulfillment of a contract awarded by the Western Australian […]

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Maritime Security Vessel News Roundup | June 25 – New frigates, corvettes and a special operations support ship

The Hellenic Navy acquires a former research vessel for special operations support as Japan welcomes a stealth frigate into service and new corvettes for Russia and the Philippines are launched. Construction begins on Australia’s Hunter-class frigates. Finally, ordered have been placed for frigates for the German Navy and patrol boats for Australia’s Pacific Island neighbours. […]

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Construction begins on Royal Australian Navy’s Hunter-class frigates

Cutting of the first steel of the future HMAS Hunter

Osborne Naval Shipyard in Adelaide, South Australia, has cut the first steel to be used in the construction of the first Hunter-class frigate ordered by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). The piece of steel cut will form part of the under structure support for the port side propeller shaft brake...


Australian government orders two additional Guardian-class patrol boats

A Guardian-class patrol boat

The Australian Government has ordered two additional Guardian-class patrol boats from Austal Australia by way of a contract valued at approximately AU$39 million (US$26 million). The 39.5-metre, steel-hull patrol boats, to be constructed at Henderson in Western Australia and scheduled for delivery...


Newly formed defence company to support Australia’s nuclear-powered submarine procurement

H&B Defence Executive Team

US naval shipbuilder Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) and UK defence technology company the Babcock International Group have formed a new joint venture and entity to accelerate the development of critical sovereign capability for the AUKUS conventional armed, nuclear-powered submarine program. H&B Defence will combine nuclear submarine and shipbuilding experience from Australia, the United Kingdom,z and […]

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VESSEL REFIT | Sentinel – Royal Australian Navy patrol boat converted into autonomous systems demonstrator

PBAT Sentinel

The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has taken delivery of an autonomous surface vessel (ASV) as part of a broader project that seeks to expand the service’s autonomous systems capability. PBAT Sentinel is the former Armidale-class patrol boat ex-HMAS Maitland, which was retired from RAN service in 2022...


OPINION | We need more defence capability long before the first SSN arrives

Rendering of a Ukrainian uncrewed anti-ship boat

AUKUS is the great polariser of Australia’s national security community. Supporters are accused of risking too much for one capability; critics are accused of being unhelpful or lacking belief in Australia. All this misses the point. We have about 1,000 days before a possible conflict breaks out...


Fiji authorities launch probe into patrol boat grounding

The Republic of Fiji Navy patrol boat RFNS Puamau shortly after in ran aground in the Lau Islands on June 11, 2024

The government of Fiji and the Republic of Fiji Navy have begun an investigation into a recent grounding incident involving a naval patrol boat. The incident, which occurred on June 11, saw the patrol boat RFNS Puamau run aground on a reef in the Lau islands in the country’s southeast. The vessel’s...


OPINION | Halfway, right: Australia’s approach to the Indian Ocean

Ships of the Indian, Indonesian, and Royal Australian Navies during manoeuvres in the Indian Ocean, September 21, 2023

The waters of the Indian Ocean lap on the shores of Western Australia all the way across to Africa. But how far Australia’s defence and foreign policy interests extend into this vast watery expanse is a live debate. The “Indo-Pacific”, at least as Australia conceives this area, drives a...


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